This most recent collaboration between two spontaneous musicians, pianist Joel Futterman and reedman Ike Levin, finds them pushing the empathic envelope to discover new, blazing soundscapes in which to ply their art. Futterman, a reclusive genius with a rehearsal habit that stretches eight to ten hours a day, displays staggering technique with unending production of ideas. His partner, a Bay Area free music firebrand, matches Futterman's creative stamina, burning brightly and serving up a feast of musical fireworks on this hour-long extravaganza.
Enigma opens with "Convergence and some broiling piano work by Futterman. Levin blows in on tenor, and the duo redefines so-called energy music. Hand-scraped piano strings introduce "Wonder, with Levin sly and subtle on bass clarinet. Here, restraint and understatement rule. "Discourse features Futterman on soprano sax in a thoughtful call-and-response duo with Levin. The title track, at over twenty minutes, plays like a suite with truly unexpected deviations. Levin back on tenor suggests Rollins here and there; Futterman flashes lines on soprano while playing piano. After a truly boggling array of variations, Futterman softly voices tonal chords, and Levin follows the unexpected trend. The intensity rebuilds, and the music re-explodes.
Formations includes guest Benjamin Tomassetti on alto sax. Futterman returns to soprano for an evolving woodwind trio where players echo, answer, and transcend one another. Tomassetti returns for "Riddlesque, where Futterman returns to piano. Each player takes turns creating the melody. "Conciliation creates a haunting moment with the duo playing an introspective ballad.
These fearlessly adventurous musicians extend their string of remarkable recorded documents with Enigma, confounding expectations, except for their unswerving focus on excellence.
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.
Get more of a good thing
Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.